Minagoroshi is by far my favorite chapter of Higurashi. Each and every part of it is satisfying to me. Even the downer of an ending.
The nature of the alternate timelines is revealed; something I’d been wanting to see in a visual novel since I’d gotten into them. Since most VNs have branching paths, seeing them acknowledged sends a terrifying yet thrilling chill up my spine. The worlds we’ve experienced are all true, and are connected.
As the doll comes into play, time freezes, and a choice appears for the first time. Wanting to change fate, I made Rika confront Keichii. Keichii narrowing his eyes as he says “I know.” took my breath away, as he single-handedly avoided the tragedies of Watanagashi and Meakashi. Following that, we find out Rena talked her problem with Rina out with Mion and her father, and Shion remembered the promise to Satoshi, averting the tragedies of the other arcs. Seeing these pieces fall into place so perfectly was the ultimate catharsis after the hours upon hours of torment I went through seeing these characters, who by this point I considered my own friends, suffer. Finally, something went right. These outcomes felt so earned.
Keichii stopping Shion from murdering Teppei was quite the ironic mirror to Tatarigoroshi, and the club fighting against him the correct way was great. In the end, strength comes from acknowledging your problems and asking for help, not simply enduring them. A good message for anyone suffering from abuse. Satoko is truly my hero.
Finally, everything is revealed, and Rika again follows the message of Minagoroshi by asking for help when she needed it. The club saving her and Satoko is my second favorite part of the novel, and even if everything following was sad, Hanyuu’s determination at the end was worth it.